Miami Realtors host groundbreaking for cargo container concept home

by Andrew Morrell

Courtesy of Miami Realtors

The Miami Association of Realtors hosted a groundbreaking event Jan. 9 for a one-bedroom home in South Miami built from a metal shipping container, the first of its kind in the area and a prototype for what could be an economical, mass-produced home design. Designed and built by Little River Box Co. and Cobo Construction, Miami Realtors and local officials hope the container home could spur a new trend, demonstrating a functional solution to the affordable housing shortage afflicting the area and much of the U.S.

“Not only are Realtors taking action and building a prototype to explore the challenges to this new style of housing, but we’re also partnering with Miami-Dade County on another endeavor — keeping properties affordable,” the fact sheet for the container home explained.

Turning shipping containers into shelter is not a new concept. Steel intermodal freight containers of the type used to built the South Miami concept home are ubiquitous around the world, making them relatively inexpensive to acquire. That’s made them easy to repurpose into mobile homes and various kinds of fixed structures. Miami Realtors hoped to exploit this advantage to demonstrate the effectiveness of the container housing concept as an affordable home solution.

“Within our defined space for development, there is tremendous demand for workforce housing, which begs the question, ‘How do we create more housing supply within our current boundaries to meet this demand?'” the home’s factsheet explained.

The South Miami container home is under construction at 6180 SW 63 Terrace, and will offer 480 square feet of indoor space on a 3,200 square foot lot. The home also will come with a deed restriction mandating it be sold at cost only to buyers with income that is 80 percent or less of the area’s median income (around $51,000 annually). Moving forward, the home must also remain affordable according to this metric for at least 20 years, and as long as the next 60 years.

Miami Realtors and the other development partners are hoping to list the home once it’s completed this summer for a price of around $140,000. Check out more photos of the groundbreaking here.

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